June 4, 2015 Glenn R. Jones, Cable and Online Learning Pioneer, Named Living Legend
Contact: Gayle Osterberg, (202) 707-0020
Librarian of Congress James H. Billington has named Glenn R. Jones, executive chairman of Jones/NCTI, a Library of Congress Living Legend, an honor conferred on significant contributors to the nation’s cultural, scientific and social heritage.
The Colorado-based entrepreneur, a pioneer in cable television and in dissemination of knowledge through digital networks, thanked the Librarian for the honor and praised the Library for its role in bringing its riches to lifelong learners worldwide.
“I am deeply honored to be recognized as a Living Legend by the Library of Congress,” Jones said. “It has been my life’s passion to make education accessible to more people, and I am humbled to join the list of Living Legends who have contributed to our American way of life.”
Billington noted, at a ceremony in the Library’s Thomas Jefferson Building, that through all his years of heartfelt support and generosity, Jones has tended to be low-key, focusing on the result rather than the credit.
“Glenn has played an historic role in progressing the treasures of the Library beyond Washington for the education and inspiration of people everywhere,” Billington said. “Glenn has been a model public servant at both the national and international level.”
Jones’ dedication to education as a crucial public good was obvious, the Librarian said, from Billington’s earliest days at the Library. Billington said he traveled to several cities around the nation shortly after his confirmation by the U.S. Senate, and he kept encountering Jones—then best-known as a cable-TV executive—at meetings concerned with libraries or education. It was clear, Billington said, that this was a man with a clear focus on the value of education and on spreading that intellectual wealth.
“Deeply admired by his colleagues, it is wondrous that a man of such prodigious accomplishments is also so authentically modest, so anxious to give credit to others, and so generous in sharing his unique blend of practical wisdom,” Billington said.
Jones’ entrepreneurial career began with his acquisition of a small cable-TV system in Georgetown, Colorado, in 1967; he expanded Jones Intercable Inc. into one of the 10 largest CATV operators in the U.S during his 32 years at the helm. In 1987, Jones founded the cable-television-based Mind Extension University, which offered college courses via cable TV, and in 1993 he founded the Internet-based Jones International University, the first fully virtual university to be accredited.
Jones was among the earliest members of the James Madison Council, the Library’s private-sector advisory group. Jones was central to the Library’s fundraising for its digital initiatives. Most recently, Jones’ corporation made available $250,000 to the Library of Congress/UNESCO joint project, the World Digital Library, for expansion of the site to include digitized content pertaining to American achievements in science and technology.
He heads Jones/NCTI, Inc., a leading provider of technical training, consulting services and education in the cable and broadband industry. The corporation has provided training to hundreds of thousands of technicians, customer-service representatives and broadband-industry executives.
The Library of Congress Living Legend Award was instituted in the year 2000, when the Library celebrated the 200th anniversary of its founding. The award has been made to more than 100 artists, writers, activists, filmmakers, physicians, entertainers, sports figures and public servants who have made significant contributions to America’s diverse cultural, scientific and social heritage. For more information, go to www.loc.gov/about/awards-and-honors/living-legends/.
Founded in 1800, the Library of Congress is the nation’s oldest federal cultural institution. The Library seeks to advance the knowledge and creativity of the American people through its collections, programs, publications and services. Many of the Library’s rich resources can be accessed through its website at www.loc.gov.